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Ballistic Resistance of Body Armor
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Authors: U.S. Dept. of Justice 
Book Description:
This book, “Ballistic Resistance of Body Armor,” is a minimum performance standard developed in collaboration with the Office of Law Enforcement Standards (OLES) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). It is produced as part of the Standards and Testing Program of the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. This standard is a technical book that specifies the minimum performance requirements that equipment must meet to satisfy the requirements of criminal justice agencies and the methods that shall be used to test this
performance. This standard is used by the NIJ Voluntary Compliance Testing Program (CTP) to determine which body armor models meet the minimum performance requirements for inclusion on the NIJ Compliant Products List. In addition, manufacturers, criminal justice agencies, and others may use the tests described in this standard to determine whether a particular armor design meets their own requirements. Users are strongly encouraged to have this testing conducted in accordance with the NIJ CTP. Procurement officials may also refer to this standard in their purchasing documents and require that equipment offered for purchase meet or exceed these requirements. This book is a testing and performance standard and provides precise and detailed test methods.

Table of Contents:


Commonly Used Symbols And Abbreviations

1. Purpose And Scope

2. NIJ Body Armor Classification

2.1 Type IIA (9 mm; .40 S&W)

2.2 Type II (9 mm; .357 Magnum)

2.3 Type IIIA (.357 SIG; .44 Magnum)

2.4 Type III (Rifles)

2.5 Type IV (Armor Piercing Rifle)

2.6 Special Type

3. Definitions

4. Sample Requirements and Laboratory Configuration

4.1 Test Samples

4.1.1 Flexible Vests and Jackets

4.1.2 Hard Armors and Plate Inserts

4.1.3 Accessory Ballistic Panels

4.1.4 Workmanship

4.1.5 Labeling

4.1.6 Armor Carriers With Removable Ballistic Panels

4.1.7 Armors With Built-In Inserts or Trauma Packs

4.2 Laboratory Configuration and Test Equipment

4.2.1 Range Configuration

4.2.2 Test Rounds and Barrels

4.2.3 Velocity Measurement Equipment

4.2.4 Armor Submersion Equipment

4.2.5 Armor Backing Material

5. Flexible Armor Conditioning Protocol

5.1 Purpose and Scope

5.2 Pretest Parameters

5.2.1 Storage of Armors

5.2.2 Pretest Calibrations

5.2.3 Test Conditions

5.3 Laboratory Configuration and Test Equipment

5.3.1 General Parameters

5.3.2 Controls

5.3.3 Test Interruption

5.3.4 Procedure

6. Hard Armor Conditioning Protocol

6.1 Purpose and Scope

6.2 Pretest Parameters

6.2.1 Storage of Armors

6.2.2 Pretest Calibrations

6.2.3 Test Conditions

6.3 Laboratory Configuration and Test Equipment

6.3.1 General Parameters

6.3.2 Controls

6.3.3 Test Interruption

6.3.4 Conditioning Procedure

7. Ballistic Test Methods

7.1 Purpose and Scope

7.2 Test Order

7.3 Workmanship Examination

7.3.1 Armor Carriers and Ballistic Panel Covers

7.3.2 Ballistic Panels

7.3.3 Label Examination

7.4 Sampling

7.5 Sample Acclimation

7.5.1 Inserts

7.6 Fair Hit Requirements for All Ballistic Tests

7.6.1 Minimum Shot-to-Edge Distance

7.6.2 Minimum Shot-to-Shot Distance

7.7 Backing Material Preparation and Sample Mounting for All Ballistic Tests

7.7.1 Backing Material Fixture Preparation

7.7.2 Mounting Armor for Ballistic Testing

7.8 Perforation and Backface Signature Test (P-BFS)

7.8.1 Shot Location Marking

7.8.2 Armor Submersion

7.8.3 Test Threats for P-BFS Tests

7.8.4 Test Duration

7.8.5 Requirements for Number of Shots and Number of Armor Samples

7.8.6 P-BFS Test for Special Type Armor

7.8.7 P-BFS Test for Accessory Ballistic Panels

7.8.8 P-BFS Performance Requirements

7.9 Ballistic Limit (BL) Determination Test

7.9.1 Requirements for Number of BL Tests and Test Samples

7.9.2 Test Procedure Requirements

7.9.3 Backing Material Conditioning

7.9.4 Data Set Tabulation

7.9.5 Ballistic Limit Performance Requirements

8. References

APPENDIX A –Acceptable Bullets for Handloading

APPENDIX B –Common Special Type Threats

APPENDIX C –Armor Sizing Templates

APPENDIX D –Analysis of Backface Signature Data

APPENDIX E –Analysis of Ballistic Limit Data

APPENDIX F –Explanatory Materials


   Binding: Softcover
   Pub. Date: 2009, 1st quarter
   ISBN: 978-1-60692-295-8
   Status: AV
Status Code Description
AN Announcing
FM Formatting
PP Page Proofs
FP Final Production
EP Editorial Production
PR At Prepress
AP At Press
AV Available
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Ballistic Resistance of Body Armor